Gray is a favorite color of mine.  I love it whether it’s soft gray sweaters, furry gray kittens, or beautiful gray beads.  Gray is a sophisticated neutral that makes a statement in a quiet way.  The idea for this necklace came when I saw the gray agate tubes sitting next to the gray fresh water pearls.  It was one of those happy accidents that occur from time to time.  I loved the light and dark gray pearls with the agate tubes and made all the dangle segments, not really sure at the time where I would head with the necklace.  All of the links were made with sterling silver wire that I darkened to a matte finish that I think shows the beads off better than shiny silver would.

When I went to bring the necklace together, I remembered I had these matte finish hematite beads and felt they were just perfect.  They brought another aspect of gray into the design and look wonderful with shiny dark gray pearls interspersed in short intervals.  Given that the necklace was made using a single color – shades of that color, shape, texture, and finish had to bring the visual interest and artistry that I seek to create in each piece of jewelry.

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TrinketBox

Photo courtesy of funwallart

Beautiful jewelry deserves a beautiful box and I just love the handcrafted ones from funwallart.  They all have an artistic and romantic air that is just lovely and so well executed.  I imagine opening the box and seeing a gorgeous creation inside like maybe this bracelet.  Named Angelica, it features a sweet little silver moth, aquamarine gemstones, glass pearls, and crystal in soft tones and subtle shades of aqua and green.  To see more of funwallart’s fabulous creations click here.

AngelicaBracelet1

 

 

2640055I designed this bracelet to accent the twisted blue lace agate oval center bead.  I love blue lace agate, I find it works equally well as the focal point or as supporting cast adding lightness in a design that needs it.  I accented the blue lace agate bead with sparkly crystal, creamy coral ovals, bright sterling silver, and picture jasper in wonderful brown tones.

I made earrings to coordinate, not match exactly; using hand formed and hammered sterling silver loops.

serpentine-oval-braceletI love gemstone shopping and couldn’t resist these yellowish-green serpentine ovals.  I like that they are faceted, bringing light and movement to any piece they are used in.  I decided a bracelet would be the perfect thing and accented the serpentine ovals with a sterling silver oval oriented in the opposite direction.  After cutting, soldering, and flattening the silver oval, I textured and darkened it to bring the texture to life.  The silver and serpentine ovals are then complemented by brown shell rectangles, brown glass, and a tiny bit of crystal in the same color as the serpentine.  Simply delicious!

green-garnetMy birthday is in January and garnet is my birthstone.  Growing up, I wanted a more girly birthstone, something light pink or light blue.  As I grew up, I realized garnet was a beautiful birthstone.  I love it and work with it quite a bit. 

Growing up, I also knew garnets as dark red stones.  It was a while before I realized they also came in green.  I bought a lovely strand of them last year and enjoyed making them into a necklace along with some Peruvian opal and red garnets.  I sold it and hope it has gone on to a good home.

I had four green garnet beads left and made them into the bracelet shown here.  I love them with the aqua and golden tones in the bracelet.  When I go bead shopping in this new year, I think green garnets (and red ones too) will be on the shopping list.

daughtersbraceletThis is the bracelet I made for my friend’s daughter.  I made a pink bracelet for my friend that kept being borrowed, so she requested one for her daughter.

I had a little trouble finding the right focal beads but after a some searching, I found these lovely pink gemstone faceted rectangles.  I created a bracelet around them using tiny bits of tiger’s eye to accent the colors in the pink stone beads.  My friend is happy, her daughter is happy and has now ordered earrings…

prong-setting1One of the fabulous things about being able to solder is being able to set stones, beach glass, and other items in settings of my own design.

Right now, I am enjoying exploring prong settings.  I am currently interested in prongs that are somewhat exaggerated in size with a ball on the end.  I want them to be part of the overall design, not something that should barely be seen.

Last night, I completed this necklace.  I set a white mother of pearl stone on a hand-textured and darkened starling silver base with four prongs.  All beads used in the necklace are white or clear, leaving the almost distressed looking silver as the only dark element of the design.